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Brown Vs the Board of Education  By: Lordina Ampere, 5 th Grade During the times of legalized racial segregation African ...

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Poetry Work Shop 2014

This summer C.Y.C.S.I. hosted it's first poetry work shop lead by Urban Word Poet Jah-Don Hart. Students from grades 3rd through 8th participated.  

The purpose of the poetry workshop is to expose students to a different form of creative expression that is fun and engaging and also reinforces literacy skills. The goal of the poetry workshop is to help the students develop original poems and spoken word pieces.
The workshop took place over a course of 3 days. During the first session students learned about the fundamentals of creative writing and the importance of limitless freedom when writing creative pieces. During the second session students participated in writing prompts geared towards developing poems centered on specific themes such as New York City. During the third session the students begin to finalize their pieces and we're introduced to performance poetry techniques. 

Select students will further develop their pieces and perform them at the summer culminating event. 
Below are some poems inspired by different writing exercises the students participated in:

About Jah-Don Hart

At the age of 17, he received something that would forever change his life—his 
first poetry award, which was an Honorable Mention given to him by Random 
House’s Creative Writing Competition for High School Seniors. He went on to be a 
Knicks Poetry Slam Semi-Finalist, and had featured performances for the Brooklyn 
Public Library, Urban Word NYC, NAACP Jamaica –Queens Branch etc. When he was 
19, he became a member of the Word Wide Youth Leadership Board at Urban Word 
NYC, a select group of ten teens who would become the faces of the non-profit 
that reached out to thousands of inner-city youth through literature and 
hip-hop. That was the same year that he became one of New York City’s Youth Poet 
Laureate Ambassadors, which were poets who traveled from venue to venue 
encouraging youth voter engagement.

But amidst all of the awards and achievements, something was terribly wrong. 
“All of my friends know me as a political activist and a philosopher”, lamented 
Jah-Don, “but none of them know me as a man of God.” On February 12th, 2012, 
Jah-Don publicly renounced all of his hypocrisy, his double-mindedness, and was 
baptized into Christ. He took a half year’s hiatus from writing so that he would 
“break out of the general spoken word mold”, “live more responsibly”, and “learn 
to understand the human heart”. After such, he came to perform in front of his 
previous mentors (and some modern legends of poetry including Abiodun Oyewole 
and Carvens Lissaint) who were baffled by the sudden boldness that was now 
inextricably tied to all of his messages. This was since he decided to divert 
the focus of his poetry from tales of rebellion to the ills of the human heart, 
and how every ill stems from what man decides to do and not to do.

Now, at the age of 22, Jah-Don has currently taken a hiatus from the stage to 
write a dystopian allegory, titled Neo Laodicea and the Jeweled Palaces, which 
he expects to release sometime in 2016.


Friday, July 11, 2014

Water Day 2014

Once again we celebrated the summer season with our annual Water Day Event! The students enjoyed slashing about with their water toys and friends, ice cold ice pops, and dancing with the sprinklers under the warm summer sun.
Water Day was great! I liked going in the sprinklers. During the water game we had to see who could move swiftly through the water without getting wet. - Huntley Swaby
Water Day is cool because you get to splash
 water at each other. - Justin Mack

It was really fun. We were able to wet each other and enjoy the best day ever! - Thomas Toliver

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Summer 2014 Music Production Session

This summer students were introduced to the fundamentals of music production.

During the first and second week of A.C.T. the students participated in creating music beats and operating audio recording technology using DAW's (digital audio workstation). The DAW's the students used included Garage Band, FL Studio and the online digital beat making tool Beatlab.

During the third through fifth week of program the students utilized what they learned into executing music production projects. The students collaborated on a music production project for the song "The Future". The song's instrumentals we're produced by Kamille Gordon using Garage Band. The song lyrics include an inspirational verse derived from Jordan Bartlet's and Tai Chandler's song from the P.S. 176 Boys Choir and original lyrics crafted in A.C.T. club. The students participated in the audio engineering process and observed the post production process of mixing and mastering the audio tracks.   

Below are some reflections and statements by the students based on their experiences during the first week of the music production session:

Today I made a cool new beat! - Taylor Washington

Today I learned how to make a creative beat using music loops. One day maybe I can put it in a movie. - Bianca Loyd

Today I made beats on Beatlab, FL Studios, and took photos of the students. - Tai Chandler

I made beats on FL Studio and I plan on making a song. - Jordan Bartlett

Monday, July 7, 2014

What Exactly is Global Warming?

The Students of A.C.T. Club we're introduced to the cause and effects of Global Warming.

Global Warming occurs when there is an increase in temperature in the Earth's atmosphere. The increase in temperature is caused by the greenhouse gas effect that increases the  levels of carbon dioxide, chlorofluorocarbons, and other pollutants.

 The effects of Global Warming over a long period of time will be detrimental to the environment. Global Warming may eventually transform Earth into an uninhabitable planet.

The students participated in a group discussion on Global Warming and completed worksheets and art work demonstrating their knowledge on the causes of Global Warming and what can be done to counter it's effect. The students also watched several videos on the topic including a clip from the popular Fox Network mini series Cosmos and a fun educational animated short Climate Tales funded by NASA. In our discussion we talked about the importance of preserving the environment by "Going Green" which means to take actions against waste, pollution and exhausting fossil fuels. 

Below are some comments that the students made based on their experience during the Global Warming lesson:

"The Global Warming cartoon was funny because the fish was old" - Jermaine Washington

"In the cartoon the trees were cut down and the air was polluted" - Joshua Jones

-Aniya Lewis
-Alana King
-Faith Grinion
-Jasmine Mayers